You’ve got your certification in hand, your makeup kit built, and you’re ready to take the professional scene by storm! People are interested in your makeup artistry and you can’t wait to put your skills to use. There’s only one problem: you haven’t priced your services!
Many new professionals feel nervous about pricing their services and building service packages. It’s a fine balance of charging enough to make a living, but not so much that clients lose interest. Your packages should offer a full range of services without including ‘extras’ that clients don’t need.
Putting time and effort into building great makeup artistry services and packages and pricing them well is one of the most important steps to start your professional career off on the right foot! Check out these key steps for doing just that!
Step 1: Define your services
Dissect your talents and figure out what you actually have to offer your clients. Are you primarily a bridal makeup artist? Do you also do high fashion, glamour, airbrush or special effects makeup? Perhaps you’re even trained in extra services like hair styling and nail design!
Lay your skills on the table and analyze exactly what you have to offer your clients.
Step 2: Create appealing combinations
Now that you see what you’re capable of, assess how you should market each service. Choose combinations of services that go well together and build packages based on which combinations might interest your target clients most.
For example, if you want to offer bridal makeup services, you can have different packages such as a basic service (makeup for the bride and bridesmaids), a more advanced option that also contains an airbrush application for the bride, and a third where you combine hair styling with the makeup services.
You probably won’t, however, offer a bridal package that includes your best prosthetic work on the list. Special effects will fall into a different package in order to appeal to different clients.
Here’s where it gets fun: You’ll want to name your packages in a way that grabs clients’ attention while being informative on what they offer. In the three “bridal” services listed above, for instance, you could call them “Wedding Party Makeup” (for the first one), “Wedding Party + Airbrushed Bride” (for the second) and “Full Wedding Coverage” (for the third that includes hair styling). Ideally the more expensive combinations will sound prestigious, while the less expensive ones will have names that make them sound more basic.
Step 3: Get creative with your extra services
You can do more than put together standard packages. In fact, creating fun “themed” or seasonal packages is a great way to attract new clients and boost interest in your different skills. Think about combining various services to offer packages for special events like:
Girls’ night out makeovers
Valentine’s Day or date night makeup
Glamour makeup for portraits and professional photos
Step 4: Research your local industry
Once your packages are built, it’s time to think about pricing. Your prices should be competitive, meaning that they’re similar to the “going rate” or the standard price on your area. Pricing competitively benefits both you and the rest of your local community.
By pricing too low, you could drag the going rate in your area down by forcing other makeup artists to lower their prices to compete with yours. This causes everyone to make less money.
By pricing too high, you could drive the going rate up. This sounds like a positive thing at first, but people won’t really make more money if local services become too expensive and clients lose interest in the industry.
Research other makeup artists with packages similar to yours and compare their prices to find the average rate.
For more information, check out this article: “How to price your makeup services”
Step 5: Consider your level of experience
The makeup artists charging the “going rate” in your area might have been working professionally for many years. You want to charge a price that gives your skills credit, but that doesn’t over charge compared to your level of experience.
There’s no shame in being a beginner, but you’ll also lose clientele if you charge the same price as the seasoned professionals even though you’re not quite on their level in terms of skill. You might charge just below the going rate when you’re first starting out, or just above the rate if you’re very experienced and in demand.
Step 6: Stick to your guns
Once you’ve established your pricing, have confidence in the value of your packages! Offering the occasional discount or the option to bundle packages can be a great marketing tool, but don’t haggle or bargain. Your price is your price, and that’s that!
If people learn that your price can be knocked down with a little persuasion, you might find many clients trying to short change you and you won’t be making what you’re worth as a result. Respectfully decline bargaining attempts, restate your price, and remain confident in what your skills are worth.
Note: If you suddenly realize that all of your clients beg you to lower your prices, investigate your local industry again. Ask yourself whether you’re really overcharging or whether people just really enjoy discounts.
It’s about balance!
Building service packages and pricing them correctly sounds intimidating, but you can have fun with it! Think about what kind of package you’d most like to purchase if you were the client and combine your skills to offer a really great service. Stick close to the going rate, respect your local industry, and respect yourself as a professional!
Interested in learning more about running a makeup business? QC’s certification courses come with complete business training! Download a course decision guide to find out which program is right for you!